Gastrointestinal disorders, menstrual irregularities, hair loss … 8 unknown effects of tobacco

Somewhere in the back of their heads, smokers know that tobacco is not only harmful to their lung system. Over the past ten years, cigarette and tobacco packages have shown protective images, each more disgusting than the other, supposed to warn about the harmful effects of this “drug”.

It is estimated that France has between 10 and 15 million smokers. If most of them are aware of yellowing of the teeth, change in taste and especially lung cancer, do they know the other harmful effects of tobacco? We’ve listed eight of them, but there are clearly a lot of them over the counter.

Smoking is known to be responsible for lung cancer. But several studies conducted by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) highlight its role in the emergence of other cancers: cancer of the throat, tongue, and also breast cancer.

In a study published in 2014, the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm) established that cigarettes increase the risk of breast cancer by 16%, even if it’s not from secondhand smoke. On the other hand, “Starting smoking at an early age, before the first pregnancy, increases the risk of breast cancer later in life”concludes this research work.

Tobacco also increases the risk of diabetes. “The cigarette, due to the fact that it contains many toxic substances, and smoking, both active and passive (suffered), has proven harmful effects on the cardiovascular system and the metabolic system. Tobacco significantly increases the risk of complications of diabetes”explains the French Federation of Diabetics.

  • Tobacco and hair loss

“It has been proven that smoking can be responsible for hair loss and in particular androgenetic alopecia”, Explains the Tobacco Information Service, before being more reassuring and adding that this type of alopecia is not permanent. In fact, “The toxins in the scalp are being eliminated little by little. Hair can regrow after a few months of weaning.”

According to the Prevention website, hair loss is caused by a lack of oxygen and lack of scalp irrigation, and tobacco causes include:

“Hair follicles need oxygen, nutrients, and minerals to produce healthy hair. The toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke can affect circulation, narrow blood vessels, and disrupt blood flow. When follicles don’t get the blood they need to nourish themselves, the hair growth cycle is halted.”

Reports indicate that smoking extends fracture healing time by six weeks Le Figaro In 2013, based on a study conducted by researchers at Penn State.

Smoking delays the rebuilding of bone tissue and increases the risk of complications,” writes the National Daily on its website. So much so that it takes an average of six weeks for a tibia fracture to heal longer for a smoker than for a non-smoker. Concludes.

This harmful effect of tobacco affects both men and women. “Furthermore, among smoking couples, the normal time to conception is doubled”Tobacco Information Service. To be clear, in male smokers, “Sperm appear frequently with anatomical abnormalities that cause poor motility and greater difficulty in penetrating the egg”.

for smokers, Tobacco reduces fertility in proportion to the amount of cigarettes smoked each day.. In fact, nicotine not only causes hormonal changes, but also has a harmful effect Cervical mucus (where sperm swim) And the The microscopic cilia that line the inside of the tubes (and help the sperm reach the egg).

In addition, quitting smoking causes women to return to normal fertility within a few weeks. In men, it is estimated that it will take three months to see improvement, which is the time it takes for sperm to form.

As we just explained, smoking affects the hormonal system. So it can also work on the menstrual cycle. According to the Tobacco Information Service, “Smoking reduces the secretions of estrogen and hormones associated with the female menstrual cycle. Therefore, female smokers often suffer from menstrual disorders (irregular periods, pain)”.

Additionally, smoking can be responsible for premature menopause.

When it comes to surgeries, some may already know that sometimes it is advisable not to smoke before the operation. “Per-operative smoking increases both general (infectious and coronary, transfer to intensive care, etc.) and surgical risks (scar complications, loosening of sutures, delay in bone fusion, etc.), Explains in detail the Tabac Information Service.

And to add: “It is recommended to quit smoking six to eight weeks before a scheduled surgery. […]. And stopping in the days prior to the intervention represents a benefit.”

  • Tobacco and digestive disorders

Let’s start by remembering that when you smoke a cigarette, you inhale ‘About 4,000 chemicals’ which have adverse effects on the digestive system. These disrupt our transit and could be responsible for more or less severe gastrointestinal and intestinal diseases.

According to the Tobacco Information Service, Nicotine has a stimulating effect on the gut. And therefore , “Many smokers use tobacco as a way to regulate transit. In smokers, the gut also depends on nicotine to function. And when you stop smoking, problems with constipation and bloating can arise.”

Note that after you quit smoking, your digestive system returns to normal function within an average of a month or two. Evidence that smoking cessation sees positive effects almost immediately. Courage to all those who are taking advantage of May 31st to try to end this bad habit.

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